Sunday, July 13, 2014

Orphanage fun and trip to the traditional market

We spent time most days at Insan Permata orphanage.  Our team really became close with the kids there.  They would sing and dance together and play games.  Each night the orphanage children would write notes or draw pictures for our kids and ours began doing that for them as well.  It was an ancient form of "texting."  That is apparently what happened before wifi and television.

We started a mural on the outside of the orphanage which we will get up a final picture of soon.  It had about an hour left of work that our friend, Justine, will finish up in the next week or so.  It looks very good.  Jimmy cleaned out some pretty icky ears and we found that the children at the orphanage have some real dental problems.  We are working to get those taken care of by local dentists.  We are hopeful that we can get all of the those cavities taken care of in the next month. 

The bond our kids made with the orphans was so amazing to see.  They truly care for one another and through the miracle of the internet, every once in a while they will get to communicate with them.  This is a pretty special thing that means these relationships can continue to be cultivated. 

Check farther down to the post to see the local market.

The local market we took the students to called Pasar Bawa.  It is a cramped underground market that is full of interesting merchandise and even more interesting smells.  Some good, some, not so much.  This market has everything from fabric for clothing and drapery to rugs, t-shirts, jewelry and who can forget the raw food including: fruits, vegetables, spices and fresh fish.  When we go here we get a lot of attention with everyone asking us where we are from and sneaking up to get a picture.  The heat and smells really gave the kids a great perspective of what many Indonesians experience on a daily basis.  The kids did quite enjoy the t-shirt stalls where they picked up some great souvenirs to take home with them.

PJ Party

For the second year in a row we had a pajama party for the M. kids.  The kids and adult chaperone's gifted the adults a night out. Those come far and few between when you live abroad.  John, Jimmy and I pulled the long straws and got to take them all out for a dinner.  It was a total treat for everyone.  It was wonderful to catch up with their lives and whats going on at the ground level.  Exciting things!

The kids had a blast. They watched a movie, ate popcorn and filled up on sweets. (Sorry Moms) They even had a dance party with glow sticks.  The big hit definitely was the song "Let it Go" from the movie Frozen.  The evening was topped with pizza and root beer floats.

1..2..3  Jump
Jumping on the couch is so much fun!
Check out these glow sticks.
Yummy Candy!
Yummy Candy!  Do you think Mom and Dad will know I had a sucker?
Sugar Rush
Sisters :)
Brother Love
Future Model!  Love those beautiful eyes!
Dancing Queen
Still working on the sucker
Dance party!  "Let it Go"

Friday, July 11, 2014

Shopping with the orphanage kids

All of the school age children at Insan Permata attend school and all of the schools require uniforms.  Orphans attending schools is not the norm because there are fees associated with going that make it hard to send them when meeting their food and clothing needs takes precedent.  Through donations and the director working out deals with various schools they have each child enrolled in a school.  This is a huge bonus for these kids as we all know how important an education is for their future. 

Paying for uniforms is a big cost as well, so one fun thing we got to do was take the orphans to Ramayana (think the Indonesian K-Mart) to shop for shoes and a few other goodies for their school uniforms.  Each of our team was paired up with a child and then went off with Rp. 200,000.  That is about $21.  They were tasked with finding black shoes first and then anything else they had left could be used for other items they needed or really wanted.  In fact many of our team spent their own spending money getting the orphans things they really wanted.  It was beautiful to see the servant hearts of our kids.

Now shopping in Ramayana is an experience in itself.  One thing you need to know about Indonesia is that shopping is a full on, all five senses experience.  Music blares through the speakers and the smells of food and sweat, and other unidetified smells mix together to make shopping here much more hectic than say, taking in the sale at Nordstrom.   Adding to this cacophony of over-stimulation, this  particular store rarely, if ever, sees any foreigners.  That meant that we were all on display like the baby panda's making their first appearance at the zoo.  Pictures and people wanting to practice their English followed them around like fan girls chasing down members of "One Direction."

The paparazzi aside, our team and the orphanage kids had a wonderful time bonding with each other and allowing them to be spoiled.  These kids so rarely get anything new from a store as most of what they have is donated.  That made this a really special trip because they got to pick out the items they received for themselves.  Some of them even cradled the bags as they went home because they were so excited.  In showing God's love to these children our team was able to see how many everyday blessings we have in our lives.  It was a real eye opener for our group!